Archive for the ‘Social Responsibility’ Category

The Social Project ManagerIn The Social Project Manager, project management consultant Peter Taylor examines the shift from traditional, top-down project management toward a new socially oriented paradigm that encourages the free exchange of ideas at all levels. In keeping with the theme of being social and collaborative, Taylor invites industry experts to share their perspectives and offers his comments in response. Because projects are about people, not processes, and technology has changed the way people communicate in their everyday lives, social project management is set to become the new standard. As project managers’ responsibilities continue to grow, macromanaging by harnessing the abilities and contributions of their teams will become increasingly vital to delivering projects on time and on budget.

The author believes that:

  • People already use advanced tools, apps, and software to share and access information in their personal lives. By leveraging these emerging habits in the professional arena, managers can benefit their projects, teams, and organizations.
  • Projects are social by nature; therefore, any project can benefit from increased communication and collaboration. Centralized control and governance are still necessary, but the project’s scale and complexity will determine how much is appropriate.
  • Newer project management models integrate decentralized control, bottom-up planning and execution, global access to real-time information, and open communication to foster team empowerment, individual buy-in, and ownership of responsibility.
  • The structure of a suitably governed project plan combined with the richness of online social tools and techniques offer the ideal balance between traditional, authoritative project management and newer, more collaborative models.
  • Success requires choosing the right tool for the needs of the project or enterprise, orienting and educating team members on how to use it properly, and creating a culture where communication and collaboration are effective rather than distracting.
  • Globally distributed teams, increased market competition, and increased internal expectations will inevitably make social project management increasingly more vital. The more socially mature an organization is, the better positioned it will be for the future.

To learn more, please visit www.bizsum.com

Read Full Post »

A Culture of PurposeIn A Culture of Purpose, Christoph Lueneburger relates how leadership today faces the complex task of building a culture of purpose to power organizations. Pursuing a purpose rooted in commercial success is one of the best ways to plant such a culture in a corporation. A company’s purpose should be bigger than the bottom line. Leadership needs to poses the right combination of competencies, including change leadership, influencing, and commercial drive. Hiring talent that has innate determination, insight, and curiosity will help spread the culture of purpose throughout the organization. Such a winning culture can be cultivated further by imbuing the company with energy, resilience, and openness.

Lueneburger provides readers with the following advice:

  • Leaders with a purpose sit at the core of any culture of purpose. They should be adept at change management, especially when first developing the foundation of a culture of purpose. They should also have the ability to influence others when initiatives begin.
  • As purpose reaches all corners of the organization, leaders who have developed a strong commercial drive coupled with the practical skills to achieve measurable results become central.
  • Hiring the right talent is the only way to perpetuate a culture of purpose over the long haul. Although employees can be helped to develop competence over time, they arrive with certain innate traits that are more or less useful in the journey toward a culture of purpose. Fortunately, candidates with the right traits are naturally drawn to companies pursuing cultures of purpose.
  • Everyone in the organization should have innate curiosity, so all new hires should demonstrate this trait. With curiosity can come insight, or gut instincts that go beyond the data. Determined people are more difficult to manage, but determination is the trait that will help a company power through difficult stages in building a culture of purpose.
  • A robust culture of purpose has energy, resilience, and openness. A common purpose provides initial energy while trust developed through honest and abundant communication ensures resilience. Openness to all stakeholder voices, including critics from the outside, will sustain the organization.
  • Sustainability should not be a drag on commercial performance but a positive goal that imbues the culture of a company with energy and purpose. By moving sustainability from a distracting item on the margins to the very center of the corporate culture, leaders can build winning organizations that stand up to challenges and thrive.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.


Read Full Post »

In the past, an engineer’s primary focus was finding simple and elegant ways of implementing design requirements. Today, however, engineers must also have knowledge of topics beyond the realm of traditional engineering – to succeed, they must possess an understanding of environmental issues, legal issues, and business issues.

In Citizen Engineer, David Douglas and Greg Papadopoulos examine the nature of engineering in today’s world and discuss how engineers are becoming the link between the world of science and society. They explain how product design is affected by environmental and intellectual property considerations, and explore how sustainable products and services can benefit business while also providing career growth for engineers.

For a free trial of EBSCO Business Book Summaries click here.

Read Full Post »